12 Bad TV Moms

Published 2 years ago by , Updated June 4th, 2014 at 10:10 am, This is a list post.

12 TV Moms We Won’t Be Sending Flowers To

worst-moms-mothers-day-2013Mother’s Day is the time of year where we give thanks to those hard working women out there who took care of us.And though today may be a perfect time to express our undying love to the mom who cared for us when we were sick; the grandmother who baked the best cookies; or even the auntie who spoiled us like her favorite cat, it’s also a great time to wag our fingers in the turned up faces of all the bad moms out there.Join us as we take a closer look at 12 TV moms we won’t be sending flowers to on Mother's Day![NOTE: The List is Comprised of characters from TV Shows currently on the air at the time of writing this.]

Moira Queen - Arrow (CW)

Moira QueenPortrayed by: Susanna ThompsonOccupation: Current CEO of Queen Consolidated, Member of a secret organization that is trying to take over Starling City.Children: Oliver Queen, Thea QueenMaternal Instincts: Moira Queen is a woman in way over her head. As matriarch to one of the richest families of Starling City, Moira's cover as a shrewd businesswoman hides her real job as a member of a secret society that has plans to “cure the city” through what appears to be very insidious means.Though it seems that Moira doesn't completely agree with ALL of The Society’s methods, she has helped them execute murders and kidnappings - including the sabotaging of her first husband Robert’s yacht, which also held her only son, Oliver. After being stranded on an island for 5 years, Oliver returns home to become the violent vigilante of Starling City known as Green Arrow… err “The Hood” - an extra-curricular activity which puts him directly at odds with dear ol’ mom.With all the confusion of taking over a city (and then most likely the world), Moira Queen doesn't have a moment for her damaged crime fighting son, her pill-poppin’ teenage daughter or her snoopy second husband, Walter.Our Gift of Choice: a case of GSP tracking chips, as Moira seems to keep misplacing members of her family.

Lettie Mae Thornton - True Blood (HBO)

Lettie MaePortrayed by: Adina PorterOccupation: Homemaker, Preacher’s wife, former Olympic-level drinkerChildren: Tara ThorntonMaternal Instincts: Lettie Mae Thornton is the definition of Satan in a Sunday hat. For most of her life, Lettie Mae’s only daughter Tara had to endure the constant beatings from an abusive, alcoholic mother who claimed her love of booze and acts of borderline prostitution were not her actions, but the work of a particularly strong demon living in her body (literally).Following a shame exorcism, Lettie Mae Thornton is born again as Mrs. Daniels, the god-fearing wife of the philandering Reverend Daniels. Now, with Jesus as her one and only drug, Lettie Mae has said her final goodbye to the daughter whose affections she once begged for, following Tara’s reluctant transformation into a lesbian vampire stripper.Our Gift of Choice: A new Sunday hat - because Satan has clearly walked out with hers, along with her sanity.

Malory Archer - Archer (FX)

Malory archerVoiced by: Jessica WalterOccupation: Chief Executive Officer of ISISChildren: Sterling ArcherMaternal Instincts: As one of the top spies for the government agency known as International Secret Intelligence Service (A.K.A. ISIS), Malory Archer was absent for most of her son Sterling’s early life, most notably leaving the boy to be raised for his first five years by their valet, Woodhouse.Malory openly describes her son as a "vain, selfish, lying, and quite possibly alcoholic man-whore," and runs ISIS with harsh criticism and general snark towards all her agents, not just Sterling. Rarely seen without a drink in her hand, it does seem that Malory loves her son (despite lying about who his real father is); although, she has shown more concern for material things than people in the past, including the prioritizing the carpet in her posh NYC condo over her recently-stabbed son.Gift of Choice: Several paternity tests - because we are dying to know who Sterling’s father is!

Jane Forrest - The New Normal (NBC)

Jane ForrestPortrayed by: Ellen BarkinOccupation: Full-time real estate agent, Part-time racistChildren: Unnamed Daughter, Goldie Clemmons (granddaughter), Shania Clemmons (great-granddaughter)Maternal Instincts: After her daughter left without warning, Jane was forced to raise her granddaughter Goldie on her own. Despite her strict values, Jane was unable to prevent Goldie from becoming pregnant with a daughter, Shania, eventually moving to LA to flee her old life.Nicknamed the "Nana From Hell" by Goldie, Jane, unable to let go, follows her granddaughter to LA without Goldie knowing, and is furious to find out that Goldie will act as a surrogate for a gay couple’s baby. Goldie’s actions prompt the moderately racist and homophobic Jane to form an arrangement with Goldie’s cheating ex-husband, Clay Clemmons, to obtain custody of Shania.  After her plan to take Shania fails, Jane tries a little better to accept Goldie’s new life, "gayby" and all. But she still refuses to return to Ohio without her granddaughter and great-granddaughter in tow.Gift of Choice:  A copy of Barack Obama's autobiography.

Lori Grimes - The Walking Dead (AMC)

worst-moms-walking-dead-loriPortrayed by: Sarah Wayne CalliesOccupation: Housewife, SurvivalistChildren: Carl Grimes, Judith Grimes (Walsh)Maternal Instincts: [SPOILER WARNING] Okay Lori, we’ll give it to you that raising kids in a zombie-apocalypse aint easy, but we’re still not entirely convinced you were so great before the world went to crap. After believing her husband Rick is forever lost to the zombie plague, Lori says a quick farewell and then immediately proceeds to replace him with his increasingly unstable best friend, Shane. When Rick makes his triumphant return, Shane is kicked to the curb, and Lori tells her son Carl to keep away from Shane with little explanation.Lori keeps her relationship with Shane under wraps and only tells Rick when she has to, due to a ambiguous pregnancy. Lori confesses that she doesn't know whose baby it is, and despite this, Rick still does his best to protect her and the unborn child. While Lori came off as a bit of a nag and just plain annoying, the only thing she really wanted in this harsh new life was to preserve the innocence of her son, Carl. This, however, proved futile, as Lori dies in front of Carl while giving birth to his sister Judith, and Carl is forced to shoot his mother in the head to ensure she won’t rise again as a zombie.Gift of Choice: Nothing - she's dead (and 95% of fans are not even mad about it).

Maxine Fortenberry - True Blood (HBO)

Maxine Fortenberry Portrayed by: Dale RaoulOccupation: Professional meddlerChildren: Hoyt FortenberryMaternal Instincts: Hate and high-glycemic foods are the only things that fuel Maxine Forentberry’s day-to-day life. For years, Maxine claimed her husband Carl was a closeted homosexual - a fact that started Maxine on the road to bitterness. When Hoyt was ten years old, Carl committed suicide by shooting himself. Maxine, knowing she wouldn't get any money if the insurance company learnt of Carl’s suicide, made it look like a burglar shot him instead.  Maxine also used her clever lie to keep her son Hoyt from leaving her, by claiming she was scared the burglar would come back.Maxine and Hoyt’s relationship takes an irreparable turn when Hoyt begins dating young vampire, Jessica Hamby. Before Maxine could separate the lovers - and influenced by Maryann's spell - she spills the beans about what really happened to Hoyt’s father, which finally gave him the push to permanently walk out on his overbearing mother.Gift of Choice: A resilient goldfish, considering Maxine hates cats, dogs and one can assume anything with fur; she needs something to love that is physically unable to run away from her.

Mom - Futurama (Comedy Central)

MomVoiced by: Tress MacNeilleOccupation: CEO and majority shareholder of MomCorpChildren: Walt, Larry and IgnerMaternal Instincts: Mom is the sweet, elderly owner and CEO of MomCorp and its multiple subsidiary companies, such as Mom's Friendly Robot Company. While having the public facade of a kindly, old grandmother, she is, in reality, a bitter, evil, cold-hearted old crone who wants to take over the world. The only thing Mom hates more than her three moronic sons (who she often abuses with frequent slaps to the face) is robots, which she claims makes her 'sick to her ass,' even though her company makes them.Mom was once madly in love with Professor Hubert Farnsworth, who worked for Mom's Friendly Robot Company, but the two broke up. They briefly rekindled their relationship, but she angrily broke it off when she discovered that their meeting was a ploy..Our Gift of Choice: Do they make "chill pills" in the future?

Victoria Grayson - Revenge (ABC)

Victoria GraysonPortrayed by: Madeleine StoweOccupation: Socialite, Housewife, Professional schemerChildren: Patrick Harper (with Maxwell), Daniel Grayson (with Conrad), Charlotte Clarke (with David)Maternal Instincts: Victoria Grayson’s heart dried up faster than a bad gambler's bank account at a very early age. After suffering the barbs and abuse of her own mother, Victoria has followed the chain of shade with her own children. Considered by many as the "Queen of the Hamptons," Victoria Grayson will stop at nothing to maintain the false appearance of the perfect upper-society family, including co-signing acts of terrorism and murder.In a rare moment of human emotion, Victoria fell in love with a shy widower named David Clarke. Unfortunately for the ill-fated lovers (but mostly David), Victoria’s husband Conrad wasn’t in the mood to share his wife with his employee.  After framing poor David for the terrorist bombing of a passenger jet, and a herculean amount of scheming, The Graysons continued to appear as the flawless family of the Hamptons - but not before Victoria became pregnant with David’s daughter Charlotte, who she passed off as Conrad’s.Gift of Choice: Our prayers - because she hasn't got a single one left once David Clarke’s vengeful first daughter, Emily Thorne, is finally ready to go after her.

Norma Bates - Bates Motel (A&E)

Norma BatesPortrayed by: Vera FarmigaOccupation: Hotel managerChildren: Norman Bates (with Sam Bates), Dylan Massett (with John Massett)Maternal Instincts: After the death of her husband Sam, Norma Bates packs up her son Norman and buys a rundown Motel in hopes of a fresh start. Although Norma loves her son, she is extremely jealous and does everything she can to keep Norman all to herself – even forbidding Norman from having other female company.After suffering a brutal sexual assault, a psychopathic Norma stabs the rapist to death and forces Norman to help hide the body.Our Gift of Choice: Some friendly advice: DON’T let Norman cook for you, ever.

Cora Mills - Once Upon a Time (ABC)

Cora MillsPortrayed by: Barbara Hershey, Rose McGowan (Young Cora)Occupation: Queen of Hearts, SorceressChildren: Regina MillsMaternal Instincts: Fighting with your mother is always a difficult thing, especially when your mom is a heartless witch. Deeming love as the ultimate weakness, Cora takes up the dark arts and magically removes her own heart to assist in her only ambition: to gain power. Although Cora’s heart sits coldly in a box, her evil mind sits comfortably in her head and is the secret weapon in her quest for power by using her deadly schemes to set in motion the rise of her daughter, Regina.Unfortunately for Cora, she went too far by murdering Regina’s true love, a lowly stable boy, in favor of the king’s hand in marriage. The loss of her beloved Daniel soured Regina’s heart forever, causing her to dip into the magic to exile her mother to a far-off world known as Wonderland. In Wonderland, Cora’s mastery of sorcery allowed her to easily snatch the throne, ironically dubbing herself as "The Queen of Hearts."Our Gift of Choice: A copy of Aretha Franklin’s Greatest Hits - because Cora is all "heart" and no soul.

Cersei Lannister - Game of Thrones (HBO)

Cersei Lannister  Portrayed by: Lena HeadyOccupation: Queen Regent of the Seven Kingdoms.Children: Joffrey Baratheon, Myrcella Baratheon and Tommen Baratheon, all with fathered by  Robert Baratheon Jaime Lannister.Maternal Instincts: Cersei Lannister is the widow of King Robert Baratheon and Queen Regent of the Seven Kingdoms. Her only mission in life is to obtain as much power as possible for herself as well as House Lannister.  To secure the Iron Throne for her nasty little son Joffrey, Cersei makes the false claim that he is a legitimate son from her marriage to the king. But in a twist that would make Maury Povich punch the air with joy, it turns out that Joffery is actually the product of her incestuous relationship with her brother Jaime Lannister. In fact, so are ALL her children!Cersei’s dark secret was an event found out by the then Hand of the King, Ned Stark. Not wanting her clever plans to become unraveled, Cersei accuses Ned of trying to claim the Iron Throne for himself, resulting in his execution – an act that essentially causes war across all the kingdoms.If Prince Joffery was a Satan-sent mess, then King Joffrey is Lucifer reborn. While Cersei’s wickedness and cunning is matched by none, she is finding it increasingly more difficult to keep young Joffery under control.Give of Choice: A sturdy canoe - because when all her secrets are revealed, there will be no place in the Seven Kingdoms she can hide.

Betty Draper-Francis - Mad Men (AMC)

Betty Draper-Francis Portrayed by: January JonesOccupation: HousewifeChildren: Sally Draper, Robert Draper, Eugene Draper, Eleanor Francis (step-daughter, from Henry Francis)Maternal Instincts: Betty Draper Francis is arguably the worst mother on our list. Though most of the other bad moms use underhanded and evil tactics to elevate or keep their kids, Betty seems to have little care of what her kids do. With an unused anthropology degree, Betty dulls the bitterness of her unhappy life with alcohol and chain smoking.The most frequent victim of Betty’s despondency is her daughter Sally, who is less-than-affectionately called a "little lesbian."  Sally’s odd, less-glamorous nature infuriates her mother into violence and constant criticism. After finding young Sally with a dry cleaning bag wrapped around her head, Betty utters this maternal gem: "If the dress that was in the dry cleaning bag is on the floor, you’re in big trouble! "Gift of Choice: Nothing. Unfortunately, there’s just no pleasing some women.

Dishonorable Mentions

worst-moms-mothers-day-2013-endRegina Mills (Once Upon a Time): (Lana Parrilla) The only reason Regina didn’t make the main list is the fact that her mother is much worse.Victoria Argent (Teen Wolf): (Eaddy Mays) When her daughter Allison falls for a young werewolf named Scott, this monster-hunting mother shows him that Momma Bear beats wolf every time, especially with the help of an SUV.Lucille Bluth (Arrested Development): (Jessica Walter) Lucille is a drunken hot mess and we love her for it! Though this former socialite might not be the best mother on the block, her wild ways and hardy dose of hilarious sass would make her an awesome auntie to go party with (and will buy you booze).Sue Sylvester (Glee):  (Jane Lynch) Sue so far seems to be taking to motherhood fairly well. But babies soon grow up, and  if the way she treats the student in school - especially the Glee Club - the teenage years are gonna be rough in the Sylvester house._____So there it is, our list of mothers that will finally make you forgive your own mother for not buying you that Power Rangers action figure in fifth grade. If you have some other truly dreadful TV moms whose dirty laundry you’d like to air out, please do so in the comments below and, of course, have Happy Mother’s Day!
TAGS: archer, arrow, bates motel, futurama, game of thrones, mad men, once upon a time, revenge, the walking dead, true blood


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  1. Lucile from arrested development..?

    • Did you get to the last slide?

      • Yeah, it’s a bit confusing ’cause there’s one more after 12 of 12, but I also hate lists where they say “10 best”, but then 4 of the 10 best are just ads or tangents.

      • True, but I still think she should have been in the top few

    • the same actress plays Malory on Archer now and they’re very similar in character. Although Malory is a bit worse

  2. Mrs Petrelli from Heroes! She is one of the worst mothers EVER haha

    • Agreed.

      • Oh totally, she would have made the list forsure if that show was still on the air.

  3. harry potters aunt petunia. what a B!

    • They’re doing TV shows, mate.

  4. How is Regina on the dishonorable mention list… She is an awesome mother!

    • Apparently you’re forgetting the episode where she has her son abducted and tortured for information. She also lets her children get away with underage drinking at the club and doing drugs. She kind of sucks.

  5. Also: Celia Hodes and Nancy Botwin from Weeds
    Evelyn Harper (Charlie and Alan’s mom) from Two And A Half Men
    Constance (Jessica Lange’s character from AHS season 1)

  6. I love Victoria Grayson gift the best because she’s going to need it.

  7. “But in a twist that would make Maury Povich punch the air with joy”

    How wonderful of a way to sum THAT up :) great list. Keep up the good work.

    • haha why thank you!

  8. No Skylar from Breaking Bad?

  9. -Each of the moms from Its Always Sunny.

    -Skylar from Breaking Bad.

    -Mrs. Petreli from Heroes.

    -Lois from Family Guy (she is married to a Peter) (he is mentally retarded, you found that out in one episode, and smoked crack in another).

    • ^ What Big Baby Jesus said (especially Skylar White and Lois Griffin)

  10. =====> Livia Soprano

    • Yup, most glaring omission.


  11. Lmao! The gifts of choice kill me! Specially the Aretha album lol.

    I’d also like to add every mom that has ever been on any Real Housewives.

  12. No Mother of All Mothers.

    The one who started bad mothers

    No Mention of Peg Bundy.

  13. People do realize these are all shows that are currently on the air right?

    • One: that was never mentioned at any point in the article.
      Two: The New Normal isn’t on TV anymore; it was cancelled a couple days ago.

      • 1: Wasn’t mentioned, but is pretty apparent.

        2: My words were “currently on the air” – and ‘The New Normal’ still has an episode to air this Tuesday: http://www.nbc.com/the-new-normal/

        So…. yeah.

  14. Skylar White, totally annoying and almost unredeeming until she starts helping out Walt. I can rarely sympathize with the woman, she’s certainly not a great mom to her son either.

    • People keep saying Skylar White – but I feel like that’s more of a “Mom that annoys us” than a “bad” mom.

      How is Skylar a “bad mom” to her children? “Bad Wife?” Okay. “Bad Mom?” Harder for me to see…

  15. Sorry but Sue Sylvester has a secret heart of gold guys, thats proven by how she treats Becky and her sister.

  16. “GSP tracking chips?” Are those for die-hard Canadian MMA fans?

  17. To me, Betty Draper IS NOT a terrible mother. She is a mediocre parent. She may not be that warm and cuddly, but at least shows concern for her kids, which is something Don Draper has never really been capable of. And she knows how to discipline them when they need it. And the only time she really slipped as a parent, was during her breakdown during Season 4, when she was dealing with the emotional aftermath of her divorce from Don.

    But I keep forgetting. We live in a society in which being a good parent is about smothering one’s child with love and overindulging them. This is 21st century parenthood at its best . . . and it sucks!

    And I get tired of people demanding that women – whether they are fictional characters or real people – behave like ideal parents. I find this attitude very sexist.

  18. Ummm Skylar White? She’s worse than all of them combined come on screenrant get your s*** together